Posted 10/4/15 at 9:54 AM | Veronica Philips
As I sit on the couch, with a mug of coffee, I look out my North facing Bay window, and see with excitement that The Harvest has begun. I don't know why I like watching it. Maybe it's the window. When Old Man Winter finally arrives, I can watch him with anticipation as he sweeps down the plains of the Midwest, and right into my front door.....I only like Winter to the 1st storm, then I'm over it, but the Fall...The Harvest, the Reaping of the Spring Labor ... is Spiritual to me. It reminds me of Kingdom Key to Life #7. You will ALWAYS reap in the Harvest, what you sow in the Spring.
The month of October is special for me because 27 years ago I met the person who'd forever teach me the Key. I harshly learned to guard the heart entrusted to me, as purposely as I'd want my heart guarded. After the combines have completed their work, the Sower will look to the next season, by preparing the fields, for another crop. Our life is no different. We must constantly prepare for another season. What would have happened had I told that young man, "No" after he asked out? Well, I may not have learned to be kind to others.....for a broken heart is a painful lesson, and one we're not too likely to repeat. It devastates me to know that I was responsible for that pain in others.....sigh....age is a true measure of wisdom. I'm old ;) FULL POST
Posted 10/1/15 at 11:06 AM | Audra Jennings
While your heart might be in the right place, it is not unusual to feel uncomfortable or insecure when you’re around loved ones who are in the midst of a trial. The temptation to back away can be strong; after all, couldn’t they use some space? You don’t want to be a burden. Is that ever the right choice though? Is there something both of you can gain from friendship in the midst of suffering?
Bestselling author Kara Tippetts and Jill Lynn Buteyn answer those questions in the new book Just Show Up: the Dance of Walking Through Suffering Together (David C Cook/ October 1, 2015/ISBN: 978-1434709530/$15.99). With grace and practical advice, the friends wrote about what relationships look like in the midst of changing life seasons, loads of laundry and even Tippetts’ battle with cancer, which she tragically lost on March 22, 2015.
As Tippetts walked the road of cancer, learning to receive offers of help from friends — and the vulnerability that comes along with it — was sometimes an uncomfortable journey for everyone involved. Yet, she discovered an astounding depth of relationship with women who wanted to walk with her and her family, including Buteyn, who became one of her closest friends. “We all have tough times, but there’s a beauty that comes in doing the really hard stuff together,” Buteyn reveals. “When I look back on my time with Kara, I see a lot of tears, prayers and pain, but I also see grace and even peace. It was beautiful to walk with her, even though it hurt so much. It still hurts. But I would choose her all over again.”
Buteyn faced her own challenges as she reached out to Tippetts and her family. Maintaining friendships can be difficult even on the best of days, and troubles compound relational challenges. For Buteyn, it was hard at times to know what to say or do, and there were moments when her words sounded awkward and hollow. Along the way, though, Tippetts and Buteyn both discovered ways to meet each other in the “hard.” The book offers insightful chapters full of wisdom about the gift of silence, the art of receiving and the beauty of just showing up.
“Presence is so important in suffering because sometimes that’s really all we have to offer,” Buteyn admits. “We don’t have the right words or there isn’t anything we can do to help. Sometimes it is just about being there.” In addition to sage advice born from experience, Just Show Up offers practical tips, such as what clichés to avoid, why it’s important to be specific in your offers of help and how to avoid making your friend’s pain all about you.
Whether readers want to be present with someone going through a difficult time or find inspiration for pursuing friendship in a new way, this eloquent book reveals the power found in being present during the everyday as well as the terribly hard — and reaching out to others, no matter what.
Learn more about the life of Kara Tippetts at www.mundanefaithfulness.com. For more information about Jill Lynn Buteyn and Just Show Up at www.jill-lynn.com and on Facebook (JillLynnAuthor), Pinterest (JillLynnAuthor), Instagram (JillLynnAuthor) and Twitter (@JillLynnAuthor).
About the Authors
The late Kara Tippetts was the author of The Hardest Peace and blogged faithfully at mundanefaithfulness.com. Cancer was only a part of Tippett’s story. Her real fight was to truly live while facing a crushing reality. Since her death in March 2015, her husband, Jason, is parenting their four children and leading the church they founded in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Jill Lynn Buteyn is the author of Falling for Texas, an inspirational novel, and a recipient of the ACFW Genesis Award for her fiction work. She has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Bethel University. Buteyn lives near the beautiful Rocky Mountains with her husband and two children.
Posted 9/29/15 at 7:29 PM | Karen Kramer
From tender-hearted love to Tinder-partnered sex. That’s what it’s like today. Just get a Tinder phone app and you can find a willing partner—there are 50 million singles on Tinder, and 100 million singles on other hook-up type smart phone apps.
But make no mistake the partners you find on Tinder aren’t the 19th Century courtship partners that could lead to marriage. Nor are they like the 20th Century dating partners that could lead to a “committed relationship”.
No, welcome to the online, 21st Century smart phone app hook-up partner. Sex with zero commitment. In a sound-byte generation, with texting as the preferred mode of communication, the ideal of building a real relationship as a precursor to sex doesn’t make any sense. Why bother?
As one woman on Tinder explains, “There is no dating. There’s no relationships…[Hooking up] is a lot easier. No one gets hurt—well, not on the surface.” FULL POST
Posted 9/15/15 at 8:33 AM | Veronica Philips
If you’re in the middle of the forest, and a tree falls, does it make a sound? Hell you don’t know, you’re too busy trying to find the way out! In the middle of College Algebra last night, Merrill, thinker of all things smart, got up and left me, to watch the MNF game. Can’t judge him….I’ve done the same thing to him with English. I like a good challenge as much as anyone else. I was lost in a maze of numbers that he understood, but I kept saying, “I do it”….forget him, but I NEED him…Darn it.
The Devil is in the Details, or in this case, the forest (my math). Pride sets in when we realize we’re lost, but instead of trusting our rescuers, we decline their help. When he got to heaven, the man said to Jesus, “I trusted you, and I died!” Jesus responded, “I sent you a boat, plane and helicopter, what else did you need?” I get it, we all do it….. It’s hard to see the path out when we have blinders on. I hate that part about our nature, but Satan doesn’t. He sees our pride, raises it with panic, then bets us to keep wandering….keep roaming, when the whole time…the WHOLE time, guides were standing by. Seriously friends, I cannot say to Merrill, “I need you to discipline the boy” then get mad at him when he disciplines him. Trust only goes as far as we allow it. In the Forest, it’s dark and scary, yet we do walk with those whose gone before us, a Woodsy Waze, if you will, our rescue comes from our relinquishment of control…it hurts, but death hurts more….It’s funny how we say to God, “I just need a Word”, He says, “Trust” and we say, “I’m gonna need another Word”.
At an Oldsmobile Leadership Conference, a team building exercise was for us to chose a leader, then blindfold ourselves. We had to trust that the leader would lead us around the obstacles, to the final victory. Those who didn’t trust, hesitated and fell back, those who semi-trusted walked around with their hand out…then there were those who said, “I can’t do any better with this blinder on” and made it to the end….they were then sent back to help the roamers……get it? We have trusted advisors, friends, other family that we can lean on…hold to…follow…to do what’s in our best interest….but we don’t…..because we can’t, and we can’t because pride and fear, two emotions that do NOT come from the Lord, block our view.
What it really boils down to is, do you…or don’t you? Do you trust them or NO? It really IS that black and white. Telling my husband, “I’m going to do this and this and this, you get this little, bitty part of raising YOUR children” is neither productive, fair, righteous, nor complimentary to our partnership. When you’re in too deep, you must trust others to guide you through. Their sight…is far better….than yours. There may come a day, when you’ll lead them out of their forest as well. Okay, gotta go. There’s a MATH mess on the table. Did ya see the tomato’s I canned last night? Yep….didn’t use MATH….FREAKING once….how do you like them Pie’s? Be Blessed. Remember you set the Tone, you ARE the Example. BE KIND to each other. BE KIND to each other. Show GRACE and MERCY to all those who cross your path today. With your Daily Affirmations complete, enjoy your Tuesday.
Posted 9/12/15 at 8:23 AM | Veronica Philips
Merrill and I were in the garden picking green beans earlier this week. In the Winter, spaghetti with our canned tomato sauce, green beans, and his homemade salsa are staples in this house. “Something’s in this garden” he said, while being very cautious. Neither one of us fear snakes, but we don’t engage them either. Peter Cottontail had been trapped in there, a few days earlier, so it was natural that I had brushed off his fear with a “Wussy” and moved on. Thursday, we found out, that what was stalking the garden was indeed not a snake or rabbit, but the largest Jeremiah Bull Frog I had ever seen. Looking up at my mother and I with the largest Irish eyes I had ever seen, he begged us to move on and forget we ever saw him. “ I felt sorry for him” was the response I gave to an insensitive individual, after asking me why I didn’t eat him. Finding out I’m an Ozarks girl, he replied, “You’ve betrayed your people….That’s good eatin’ right there”…..
It took me years to embrace my roots as an Ozark girl. We are not the toothless, stupid, poor, uneducated, God Fearing Bible Thumpers that Hollywood has made us out to be. We do have running water, indoor bathrooms, our children do not drink Coke from the bottle, and no, we do not marry our brothers/sisters. The true Ozarkian folk are kind, hard working people, whom will give you the very shirt off their backs. They have an amazing BS Meter for all things nefarious, and be stupid enough to get on the bad side of one, you might as well pack up and leave. Yes, hunting, fishing, Nascar, and Friday Night Football is required for membership, but we’ll welcome you to any event that requires a Miller Light as a cover charge. In the Ozarks, meat is fresher when caught and killed yourself, and while I have CHOSEN not to hunt/forage for my own food, I don’t judge those who do….Many of my Brethren are card carrying members of the 2nd Amendment Right to Arm Deer but that’s only because roaming, fire-arm carrying, deer are a better sport. Come November 1, every pastor in the State, knows to lock up the building and take it to the Stand….The Deer Stand, and while we’re on the subject of Faith, Ozarkian folk are religious, so I suppose Hollywood did get that right, we are the God Fearing Bible Thumpers I attempted to disclaim earlier. Ozarkian Folk, closely adhere to the standard of “Doing unto others” but if you screw them over…well…we don’t bother the police with petty issues….know what I mean Vern?
Ozarkian folk have hearts of gold, and they’re full of Grace, but never mistake their Grace for Weakness, nor stupidity. I’ve learned more, from the Mama on the Porch, than I’ll ever glean in a classroom of babies…..Life…that the Ozarkian folk live to it’s fullest abounds in my beautiful neck of the woods. Charity begins at home, not the Capital. If you have something that needs building, fixing, or wrangled, simply call your buddy, then sit back and watch the wave of good folk drive up in pickups with beer, so yes, I’m ashamed to admit that for so long I fought with where I came from, but after canning several quarts of tomato juice last night, I realized that you can take the girl out of the Ozarks, but you can’t take the Ozarks out of the girl….Hmm….it’s not so bad…..Okay, gotta go. It’s going to be hunting season soon, and I gotta clean my gun. I don’t have a gun, but in the Ozarks, that’s not a problem….I love my people. Be Blessed. Remember you set the Tone, you ARE the Example. BE KIND to each other. Show GRACE and MERCY to all those who cross your path today. With your Daily Affirmations complete, enjoy your Saturday.
Posted 9/10/15 at 9:13 AM | Veronica Philips
Being an older woman, I have more fun engaging the babies than almost anything else in life. By older I mean I can still kick your booty, I just want to less….I find that I have more tolerance for all things nefarious, and unnecessary, and less tolerance for all things stupid…I do not suffer fools easily. I cringe inside….and just BEG…people to ask me my opinion….they almost never do….so in true obnoxious fashion, I’m gonna go ahead and list some things I’ve learned about being an older woman.
1. It’s easier and cheaper to say “I’m sorry” than come up with bail. I mean it hurts the pride more and what not, but in the end, an assault conviction helps no one…
2. Posting Meme’s on FB about who will be sad if you died, is desperate. Your friends and family love you very, very, very much. Do not test them on this.
3. The Northwest football team has a saying, “That’s alright, that’s okay, you’ll be working for US one day”….Karma is amazing. Be deliberate about your actions….for the toes you step on today, will be attached to the butt you kiss tomorrow.
4. Please don’t take offense if I giggle at you. I know your future. Listen to me….I know where the shortcuts are.
5. But if you don’t heed my advice, that’s okay too. We didn’t listen to our parents either. Just know that as long as you awaken the next day, there’s always an opportunity to mend an error.
6. The Borrower is Slave to the Lender…..enough said.
7. Never make decisions in duress. Take a step back, look at it, think about it, and sleep on it….
8. Your teacher really doesn’t hate you. She cares, she’s just not kissing your butt and taking your crap. Do you honestly think she’s in that low paying, less appreciate job so that she can make your life hell? She can get a drink AND get mugged by a rapid DOG and have more satisfaction.
9. Finally, bullies only make you stronger…never give up…never give in…..
Okay, gotta go. In truth, I’m not laughing at you, I’m laughing with your future self. There will come a day, when you’ll look back and think, “MAN there must be a GOD”…..There is….trust me on this. Enjoy this day…for This is the Day…..you’ll realize that too one day…..Oh….and Youth is wasted on the young….SMH. Go make your mark on the world today. Be Blessed. Remember you set the Tone, you ARE the Example. BE KIND to each other. Show GRACE and MERCY to all those who cross your path today. With your Daily Affirmations complete, enjoy your Thursday.